Monday, December 13, 2010

The Christmas Decoration

Today's muse: The One-Minute Writer

Today's prompt: Decoration. Write about a holiday decoration that holds particular meaning for you.

Note: The Christmas Decoration is based on fact. I did make a macaroni picture frame in Grade One. Mrs. Van Dyke spray painted it gold, attached a ribbon to the back, then told us to give it to our parents to hang on the tree. My mom hung my picture in the dining room where everyone could see it. I still have the picture frame somewhere, though many of the noodles have fallen off.

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The Christmas Decoration (aka The Macaroni Lisa)

Rebecca fidgeted a little as she handed her mother the Christmas present. Folded and re-folded many times, the colourful wrapping was torn in several places, held together with numerous pieces of tape.

“I made it just for you, mommy.”

Rebecca held out the dismal parcel, as though it were a priceless Faberge egg, her face glowing with pride and just a little anxiety. Tricia took the parcel from her daughter’s hand.

“For me?”

Rebecca blushed, clasped her hands behind her back and rocked on her feet.

With great care, Tricia pried open the gift, exposing the black and white picture of Becca she’d taken last week. Becca had posed like a little lady, sitting on the living room coffee table, her skirt fanned out about her legs, ankles crossed, hands held primly in her lap. Her angelic face held a serene smile that disguised the frog-chasing tomboy beneath.

“It’s lovely, sweetheart!”

So this was why the teacher wanted pictures of the kids and a supply of raw pasta.

Rebecca peered over the picture. “See the frame?”

“I do. It’s beautiful, Becca. You made this all by yourself?”

Rebecca nodded, grinning with pride. “I glued all the macaronis on one by one.” Rebecca poked at the raw noodles arranged in an intricate design. At the top of the oval cardboard frame was a farfalle noodle, just a little off-centre. A bright red ribbon was looped at the back for hanging.

“Mrs. Jenkins spray painted everyone’s frame gold. She wouldn’t let us use the spray paint.” It was clear that Rebecca was more than a little disappointed with that. “Then Mason licked his glue stick and he barfed all over the floor. It was gross.”

“I’m sure it was.”

Rebecca rolled her eyes. “Boys are stupid.”

Tricia bit her lip to keep from smiling. It wouldn’t be prudent to agree with such sage wisdom, nor did she think she needed to reprimand Rebecca for using the ‘S’ word at that moment.

“Are you gonna hang it on the tree?” Rebecca’s eyes were hopeful.

Tricia pursed her lips, thinking. Then she shook her head.

“I don’t think so, honey,” said Tricia, careful to maintain a straight face. “Becca, the tree is already decorated, and I don’t think that this picture really goes with the other decorations.”

Rebecca’s bottom lip trembled, but she didn’t cry. Instead, she nodded as though she understood, though it was clear she didn’t. Tricia cupped her hand beneath Rebecca’s chin and lifted her face so their eyes met.

“This picture…” Tricia turned the macaroni frame to face her daughter; Rebecca’s eyes darted over, then back to meet her mother’s. “This picture is too special to hang on some crummy old Christmas tree. This picture deserves a place of honour.”

Still not sure what that meant, Rebecca stood motionless as her mother crossed the room. Tricia removed the intricate wooden frame that hung over the corner table and replaced it with Rebecca’s macaroni picture.

Rebecca slipped her hand into her mother’s grasp and, as one, they stepped back to admire the art.


Christy said...

This is such a sweet story! I love it. And it shows just how special Mom's are too.

glnroz said...

I see the picture.....

summerfield said...

methinks i will read this on Life Rattle the next time i host it which is on january 2.

C. Beth said...

I love it!! Beautiful Christmas story. :) Thanks for tagging me on Twitter so I'd be sure to see it.